With confirmed coronavirus cases increasing around the globe, it wouldn’t be shocking if a few celebrities came down with the illness — but Daniel Radcliffe isn’t one of them.
Earlier this week, a rumor spread that Radcliffe, 30, had tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, thanks to a hoax tweet from a fake BBC News Twitter account, @BBCNewsTonight.
However, the "Harry Potter" actor does not have coronavirus, his team confirmed to TODAY.
“Not true,” said a representative for Radcliffe.
The Twitter account that spread the false rumor had no affiliation with the real BBC, but it shared a convincing-looking tweet with the “news” of Radcliffe’s diagnosis.
“BREAKING: Daniel Radcliffe tests positive for coronavirus,” the tweet read. “The actor is said to be the first famous person to be publicly confirmed.”
The Twitter account that shared the hoax tweet has since been suspended. Buzzfeed tracked down some anonymous members of the Twitter group who spread the false rumor.
Participants said they created the hoax because they thought “it was funny” or because they were “manipulating people’s minds,” according to Buzzfeed.
This hoax is an extreme example, but it’s a reminder that there is plenty of false information floating around the internet about the coronavirus.
The World Health Organization has a website devoted to debunking common myths about COVID-19.
One myth is that the virus can be transmitted via goods from China or other countries affected by COVID-19. This is not true, the WHO says.
“Even though the new coronavirus can stay on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days (depending on the type of surface), it is very unlikely that the virus will persist on a surface after being moved, travelled, and exposed to different conditions and temperatures,” the organization wrote.
The WHO debunked another myth making the rounds, which claims that coronavirus cannot be transmitted in hot or humid climates.
“From the evidence so far, the COVID-19 virus can be transmitted in ALL AREAS, including areas with hot and humid weather,” the organization said. “Regardless of climate, adopt protective measures if you live in, or travel to an area reporting COVID-19.”